We awoke aboard Herbie in thie morning morning to the familiar roar of the bow thruster as the first of the shiny new show boats from Crick made its escape from the marina. Aah, good. A morning’s entertainment for us as we packed up ready to leave home. While we were breakfasting in the sun on our grassy knoll picnic table we had a good view of the fun. The entrance requires a ninety degree turn in a very short length, otherwise you hit the opposite bank. Watching boats attempt the entrance or exit is a regular pastime of us Herbies as getting out of the marina is a tightish squeeze even for us 50 footers sometimes, so you can imagine what a challenge it is for seventy footers. The strange thing is, that on balance, those with bow thrusters don’t seem to do any better than those without. Quite the reverse sometimes. There’s no substitute for a bit of skill.
If it is hard for a single boat, imagine how hard it is for one seventy footer towing another. Once we heard historic boat Nuffield and her butty Raymond approaching we know it would be interesting. Here they are in the marina (sorry for the poor quality, it was taken with my phone)
And now making the exit turn. . .
Wow, they made it look dead easy. Not a scratch or a bump and straight round in one go. Well done lads.
The next boat out was a seventy foot show boat with, of course, a bow thruster. He took about three times as long and had to back up at least once.
As to the Crick show itself, it was quite a good ‘un. It hardly rained at all, and loads of people turned out to be relieved of their money. One chap we know actually put a deposit on a new Aintree boat, so he’ll be seventy odd thousand out of pocket. It is rumoured that one of the best boats had cost its owner £200,000, and that’s a narrow boat, not a barge or a wide beamer. That must be close to a record I should think. I spent a little less, but now I am the proud owner of a water filter refill cartridge and a bottle of Marine 16 diesel treatment so I’m very excited. Kath bought some sausages too, so now we’re even more excited.
What else did we do? Umm, we dallied more than occasionally in the beer / entertainment tent, liking the wonderful Herron brothers most of all, and the lady who played brilliant saxophone for Hazel O’Connor. Adam and Adrian came round for tea on the grassy knoll, as did John and Jan, the Halfies. Oh and I had a little private lesson from Phil Speight on how to manipulate the paintbrush when painting traditional rose petals.
What’s not to like?